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“Great place to stay” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Kachina Lodge

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Kachina Lodge
3.0 of 5 Lodge   |   Grand Canyon Village, South Rim, Grand Canyon National Park, AZ 86023   |  
Hotel amenities
Perth, Australia
Top Contributor
55 reviews 55 reviews
32 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
106 helpful votes 106 helpful votes
“Great place to stay”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2008

We stayed at Yavapai previously but decided to stay closer to the rim this time. The Kachina Lodge was an excellent choice. Almost chose El Tovar but having read the reviews on Tripadvisor decided against it. This was a wise choice, even though it was the quiet time El Tovar was busy. Kachina was quiet and had better views than most El Tovar rooms. We did have dinner at El Tovar and it was excellent.

There was about a foot of snow while we were there and it was freezing but the rooms were warm and comfortable. We would definitely stay here again.

  • Liked — closeness to the rim
  • Disliked — pillows
  • Stayed January 2008, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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578 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
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Chula Vista, CA
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 15, 2007

Having just retired and the Grand Canyon my favorite place to visit. This being my 6th visit. I decided to stay at the Kachina lodges, this year. Having arrived on Monday 11-12-07 and checked out on Thursday 11-15-07. I have stayed outside the park area and also have stayed at other lodges in the village area as well as the Yavapai lodge.Try to arrive early, I did and was able to check in at 11am. Parking was not a problem for myself, probably because of the early arrival. I have not stayed at El Tovar as of yet, and by far the most convenient is the Kachina lodges as for the places I've stayed. I believe Kachina was restored in 2004 and staying there was nothing but excellent, except for the noisy bathroom fan. Not so loud that it will keep you awake. The lodges are very close to the rim, perhaps in the 40 to 50 yards range, if that far. They are very quite, as the guests are very tired and have to wake up early and have no time to party at night. Also consider the fact, if you wise to see a sunrise or sunset, you are right there at the rim, granted there are other viewing points with better views. Also, in the village area, I was able to view condors, elk and deer. I also saw some bighorn sheep near the trail head to the Bright Angle trail. So, when I return next time I'll return to the Kachina lodges for the convenience and accommondations. Also, there are shuttle (free) stops very close to the lodges. I would recommend the Kachina lodges and no matter when you visit, it will be awesome. Have fun and be safe.

  • Liked — The convenience to the Grand Canyon South rim.
  • Disliked — None
  • Stayed November 2007, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Medford, Oregon
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2007

I have been the to the Canyon before, and so I realized that although the canyon is always pretty, it is at its absolute best during sunrise and sunset, so my friends and I decided it best to stay one night there so we could enjoy both (day trips from Las Vegas don't do the canyon justice and they are really too quick to even begin to allow you time to relax and enjoy some of the best God has to offer this side of Heaven). We wanted to of course stay in the historic and rustic looking El Tovar Hotel, but after much research, we chose to book the Kachina Lodge directly through the National Park Service website and here is why...

The El Tovar, although historic...
* has older rooms that may or may not be so nice inside judging from the many pictures of them we saw on the internet, and felt the money wasn't really worth the risk if we got a kind of run-down room.
* has windows that are small, and few of the El Tovar Hotel windows actually look out at the canyon (and in fact, this was confirmed by a Hotel staff member)
* has so many tourists walking around the inside of the hotel that it didnt seem that quiet to us when we finally visited the hotel, and seemed to lack a sense of privacy... (I saw many tourists, including myself, using the hotel hallways as shortcuts on their way to other areas of the hotel or parking lot, and doing self guided tours all over the historic building day and night, but mostly in the day of course)
* is more expensive and hard to get rooms with two beds in them than in other lodging at the rim.

With this in mind, we were left with the remaining few other options for lodging which the Grand Canyon National Park has to offer ... OR ... stay in the 7-mile-away town of Tusayan. Well, as the canyon was our priority, NOT the hotel, we opted for lodging as close to the Grand Canyon's rim as possible, and it doesn't get any closer than what the Kachina Lodge offers. We were NOT at all disappointed with our stay at the Kachina Lodge. It was a bit pricey (we paid $150 for a room with 2 double beds), but considering the convenence of the location, it was a great deal we felt. (Please see the many pictures I included). There is another "twin" lodge next door called the Thunderbird Lodge and looks like it was built at the same time, but the Kachina Lodge is the better choice, and here is why....

* first of all, the Kachina Lodge checks in at the El Tovar, but the Thunderbird checks in at the Bright Angel Lodge. I found it very nice to drive up the beautiful circular drive at the front of the El Tovar Hotel, drop off my guests at the front steps, let them climb the steps to the front entrance of the grand old El Tovar and then relax on the porch or in the rustic, historic lobby chairs near the fireplace and under all the stuffed animal heads hanging around on the walls while I parked the car, and then checked in at the El Tovar Hotel counter. If you stay at the Thunderbird Lodge, then the check in is done at the much more simple and basic Bright Angel Lodge check in desk.
* the Thunderbird Lodge has two floors like the Kachina Lodge, but the second floor is set back so if u stay in a second floor room, you will be partly looking out over the ugly roof of the first floor and which will also somewhat block your view of the grazing deer in the mornings and of the canyon itself just outside the back of the hotel. (I totally recommend a SECOND floor room as people walking by outside your room can not see in as they can if you stay in a first floor room... AND... because you are up higher, you can see DOWN into the canyon better)

Keep in mind, that both the Thunderbird and Kachina Lodges are not 5, or 4, or even 3.5 star hotels... they are more 2.5 or 3 star MOTELS. This doesn't mean they are junky (although we had two rooms and in one, the lamp was broken, and in the other, the tv cabinet door would not stay closed and kept swinging open until we wedged paper into the cracks to keep it closed), but rather they feel like remodeled college dormitories with cinder block walls (which by the way, helped to make it a very quiet hotel we felt!!). The rooms were nicely remodeled a few years ago, but now have some small stains on the nice carpet and some small chips on the furniture, but since the National Park system has no money, and since seeing the canyon is the priority, probably these minor issues can be overlooked. If you want a super nice hotel, then you might enjoy staying somewhere in town if you can manage to find anything nicer. Furthermore, the rooms are big, but the bathroom is a little small. Both are nicely decorated though. They offer an ironing board, a small refrigerator, coffee supplies, a coffee maker, soap, some nice little toiletries and basically the kinds of things you might find in a moderate hotel. They do NOT offer any continental breakfast, BUT they offer free coffee and some simple snacks (if I remember right, but for sure they offer free coffee) on the second floor of the El Tovar above the lobby in the early mornings!!!!! Also, if you stay on the edge of the canyon as opposed to staying in Tusayan, you will save a lot of driving time and parking hassles. The Kachina Lodge is right next door to the El Tovar Lodge, so going to the El Tovar to soak up any rustic and historic hotel atmosphere (which the Kachina and Thunderbird Lodges lack) is so easy. Also, you can even see the sunrise from your room in your pajamas if you want!! And for breakfast, please please please go to the El Tovor and enjoy a very nice one for around or under $10 per plate!! The food there is great and comes in large portions and is served by waitresses and waiters in black ties and very crisp uniforms on a white cloth tablecloth with cloth napkins, not paper. Please ask for a window table if possible... if you go there anytime before 9 or 9:30am, it should be possible without any wait or with a very short one. DO NOT eat dinner at the El Tovar... or at the nearby steak house behind the Bright Angel Lodge. Both are expensive and you can eat a quality, delicious, surprisingly nice dinner in a surprisingly nice rustic atmosphere at the Bright Angel Lodge
( a historic log cabin in its own right) for a whole lot less with
nice black-tie service there as well. Also, parking was hard to find in the early evening, but later after many people left, I simply moved the car closer to our hotel and left it there until we were ready to load it up and drive off after checking out of the hotel. I have no problem recommending this hotel to anyone. AND FINALLY.... even if you can not get a rim-side second floor hotel room in the Kachina, I would recommend taking any room you can get as it is so much nicer to stay at the rim as opposed to anywhere else, and the views of the parking lot may not be romantic, but they are actually not bad. OH.... AND YOU WILL NEED TO TRY TO RESERVE YOUR ROOMS AT LEAST 7 MONTHS IN ADVANCE IF POSSIBLE, but if you can't, there are always last minute cancellations so never give up trying.... Good luck!! (and be sure to hike the nice walking trail all along the south rim which is paved and smooth and easy and lovely and which you can see in my pictures just outside the hotel windows... the path goes on and on and on for a very long way.... you might even see dinosaur fossils if you know where to look and if you ask a park ranger to show you where to look for them at...

  • Liked — The rimside location and view.
  • Disliked — The price for the actual building itself and it could have been maintained a little better.
  • Stayed August 2007, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 35
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Yorkshire
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
80 helpful votes 80 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 28, 2007

Three days at Grand Canyon was the highlight of our Summer 2007 vacation (family with two boys 9 and 17). Kachina Lodge was the perfect location to enjoy the visit to the full. We were able to pull back our curtains in the morning and witness a full on view over the Canyon - Fantastic. We were also privileged to have Elk grazing outside our window at night.

The room was small and basic by US standards, but comfortable nevertheless. We had two Queen beds which meant that the boys had to sleep in the same bed, which they were not too keen on, but it worked. The location of the room made it the perfect place.

It is definitely worth staying in the village to get the best from your visit, but be warned that car parking can be very difficult. There is simply not enough car parking space for the number of visitors and guests at the hotels and lodges have no priority.

Our only complaint about the stay was the attitude of the receptionist at El Tovar (which is where you check in for Kachina Lodge). She was so unhelpful it was not true. Having checked in we simply asked for directions to the lodge, and advice on where to park, and she flatly refused to provide any information. We had never experienced a reception quite like it. Fortunately this did not detract from the stay overall.

We ate one night in El Tovar, which was nice, but on reflection was probably not worth it. The hotel is trying to retain its traditions, but the modern day tourist is not really interested and doesn't play along. Consequently the well dressed and very formal head waiters look out of place amongst the casual guests. Furthermore the seasonal waiters (mostly from Eastern Europe) did not have the training or expertise to carry off the formal approach (i.e. they did not know how to serve correctly), but the food was good and the surroundings unusual.

In fact we found that the best place to eat was the restaurant at the Angel Lodge, which was informal, had a good range of options on the menu, and had very friendly, informal, waiters (again mainly from eastern europe) doing an excellent job.

We treated ourselves to a helicopter ride during the visit which was a once in a lifetime experience which I am glad we did not miss.

If you are visiting Grand Canyon book early and stay at Kachina, It is also worth entering the park from the East rather than the South - smaller queues and you get straight into the sights.

  • Liked — Location
  • Disliked — Unhelpful and rude receptionist
  • Stayed August 2007, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
LA, CA
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 22, 2007

Well some rooms might be nicer-but you sure cant beat the view for the price! we had a rim view room-for $152 a night--and it was more then worth it! the Grand Canyon is amazing, book here and be more then happy-Right between to the El Tovar and Blue Angel so all the food and drink is right within walking distance. In all a great time. Hiked down to the 1 mile mark on the Blue Angel trail--wish we could have done the phantom ranch--but you need to book that about 14 months out! We saw Condors, Elk, Deer, Mountain goats and sheep, and my 5 year odl daugheter became a junior park ranger--something she was very proud of! Great time!

  • Stayed October 2007, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Phoenix, AZ
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
68 helpful votes 68 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2007

Staying at the Grand Canyon, can choose from El Tovar ($$$$) Kachina Lodge ($$$) Thunderbird Lodge ($$$) Bright Angel ($$) Maswick ($$) Yavapai ($$). The first four are by the Bright Angel Trail on the South Rim. The last two are approx 1/2 mile from the rim. Kachina and Thunderbird Lodge are traditional motel style (think Holiday Inn) rooms, mid-70s construction, and recently (within 5 years) renovated.

Kachina Lodge is adjacent to the El Tovar hotel, (use El Tovar reception), and two stories. Get a second story rim side room for great views. We had a street side 1st floor room $139.00. We stayed on Labor Day weekend, and originally booked at Maswick Lodge as no availability at any other lodges (two weeks before arrival) . Booking with Xanterra online works okay. Each lodge operates independently, so for last minute booking call lodge directly. Transfer of reservation from Maswick to Kachina Lodge was pretty smooth, and handled without difficulty by El Tovar. I dont think there is sales tax at GC so another plus (need to verify).

Room came with two queen beds. Bathroom recently renovated, tile floor, new comode, sink and shower/tub. Room size 2/3 standard motel room, so a bit snug but no complaints. Came with TV, fridge, hairdryer, iron and coffeemaker (no microwave and none available from housekeeping). Was able to get early checkin (2pm) and late checkout (12pm), without any difficulty. Room was clean and recently painted, Southwest decor. We must have been lucky as parking was not a problem, and this was Labor day weekend, and moved the car several times.

Cannot beat location as others have said, just 50ft from the South Rim and 200 yards from top of Bright Angel trail. If you are on a budget, consider Bright Angel lodge, also next to rim and room prices as low as $70.00, however they only have fullsize beds, and very very few rooms with two beds, some rooms have shared bathrooms. Bright Angel lodge is much more rustic (as in old mid 40s construction), the cabins look really nice. Maswick lodge also has $70.00 rooms (with two beds) though 1/2 mile from rim.

GC charges $25.00 for park entrance which is prohibitive. Consider an annual pass ($50.00) or take a senior citizen with you (lifetime Eagle pass is $50.00). The visitor center has no car parking (what is up with that!!!), and also 3 miles from main Bright Angel lodge area. The visitor center parking at Mather point (1/3 mi hike) can get very congested on busy weekends, Unless you have a burning desire to see the future vision of GC you might consider giving the visitor center a miss.

There is a free shuttle bus service that visits all of the main GC attractions (including the visitor center) and runs every 15 minutes during peak hours (8:00am to 5:30pm).

Finally if staying at the rim, make sure you get out of bed early and see the sunrise. The Grand Canyon is at its most spectacular during sunrise and sunset. Times (sunset/sunrise) are listed in the GC Guide, available everywhere inside the park (and free). For sunset, go to Hopi point, get there early as everyone else will be doing the same thing, and the parking is very limited (Mojave point and Hermits Rest are good alternates).

  • Liked — Location, location, location, 50 feet from South Rim at GC.
  • Disliked — Dated construction, small room size.
  • Stayed September 2007, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York, NY
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 28, 2007

The Kachina Lodge offered very basic accommodations in a spectacular setting. Parking was atrocious. We had to park a great distance from the Lodge which meant we had a long haul with our baggage from El Tovar (where one checks in for the Kachina) to our room. We were fortunate enough to procure a room with a partial view of the canyon but the view was obstructed most by the dirty windows. The mattresses could have used some serious upgrading. We appreciated the huge "green" effort the hotel put forth with the recycling bin, the energy saving lightbulbs and energy saving reminders in the room.

Dining at the El Tovar restaurant was a disappointment. A reservation was made 30 days in advance as required and confirmed 24 hours prior. But upon arrival at the desk the reservation time had been changed without explanation or apology. Service and fare did not match the steep prices.

  • Liked — The proximity to the Canyon
  • Disliked — Parking
  • Stayed August 2007, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kachina Lodge

Address: Grand Canyon Village, South Rim, Grand Canyon National Park, AZ 86023
Location: United States > Arizona > Grand Canyon National Park
Amenities:
Free Parking
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 21 Specialty Lodging in Grand Canyon National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Kachina Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 47
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Kachina Hotel Grand Canyon National Park
Kachina Lodge Grand Canyon

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